Donating Toys On Christmas
“To whom much is given, much is required.” JFK said in 1961, but about 1900 years earlier something very similar was written in the book of Luke.
My family has been given to, blessed, many would say. I have to humbly agree.
I recall a conversation with a girlfriend who had returned from a recent mission trip from Africa, she alluded to the experience as life altering. “What you see, you would never wish to see. Going there makes you understand just how much you have and how little the do.” If you ask someone what the Holiday Season, what Christmas, is all about, you would get 100 different answers. So, I prayed on it, and this is what I felt.
If we could give a gift to God, what would it be? God commands us to love Him 1st, and we show love to Him best by serving others…a Mitzvah, since my favorite, Hanukkah is approaching. (See Vayikra וַיִּקְרָא 19:18)
“Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last, and a servant to all.” Mark 9:35
Try teaching this principle to an 8 and 5-year old boy…well, that’s exactly what we tried to do today. I hope this doesn’t come off as braggy, like, “Look at how great my family is blah blah blah.” No we aren’t, they did not do this, or me, humbly at all.
Today, we went to Target (I seem to spend a lot of time there), and you know what’s sad, we passed the Hearth & Hand/Magnolia section, and I desperately wanted to stop for myself…but I didn’t. We continued to the toy isle and I gave the boys the mission to pick out gifts for children who don’t have any.
At first, this request was similar to going to the dentist and having 16 cavities filled and your tongue removed. “Can’t we have just one toy,” “I want just as many toys as we are buying today,” or my personal favorite, “This is the worst Christmas of all time,” ok…breathe, don’t smack them upside the head, you will be arrested…pause, pray, explain.
I thought of my amazing girlfriends who foster children, some will never go back to their moms or dads…and I said very calmly, “Do you know some children don’t even have a mommy or a daddy to give them gifts?” I’m not sure that was the right thing to say, but just like in the movie, The Grinch who Stole Christmas, “I could see their hearts grow three sizes that day. And then – the true meaning of Christmas came through, and the Grinch found the strength of “ten” Grinches, plus two!”
They started picking out every toy. Blake found the sales (great job, you made mama proud) and they filled the cart up and didn’t ask for anything else themselves.
I don’t know what your situation is this Christmas, and I won’t pretend like everyone is in a situation like me, but I do believe, “To those whom much has been given, much is expected.”
Merry Christmas Friends